After a flurry of decisions in late July and early August by GOP lawmakers to not run for re-election in 2020, Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI) announced on Monday that he would resign in September to deal with family issues, as lawmakers braced for more change and more members of Congress deciding to leave Capitol Hill.
"8 is the Over/Under on how many Congressmen announce their retirements within 10 days of returning after break," tweeted Rep. Billy Long (R-MO), who has openly speculated there might be a rush of lawmakers deciding not to return in 2021.
So far, 14 House members won't be back after the 2020 elections - 11 are retiring - with three others running for another office.
Of those fourteen lawmakers not returning, 11 are Republicans, with four of those eleven from Texas.
I don’t know about the precise timing, but we’re still well below the average number of retirements for a cycle. So this makes sense. https://t.co/I6EngnxQ1H— Nathan Gonzales (@nathanlgonzales) August 26, 2019
Duffy's announcement that he would resign on September 23 was not expected, as the Wisconsin Republican cited health problems with a baby due in October.
"With much prayer, I have decided that this is the right time for me to take a break from public service in order to be the support my wife, baby and family need right now," Duffy said in a statement.
Duffy's district in the north and west of Wisconsin is favored to stay in Republican hands, as it has trended more and more to the GOP in recent years.
While Democrats have so far only had three lawmakers decide not to run for re-election, some elections experts think more could be on the way, mainly because of age.
There aren't many House Democratic retirements yet, but I'd keep a close eye on California, where there are nine Dem incumbents who will be 75+ by Election Day 2020 (and another eleven who will be 65+).— Dave Wasserman (@Redistrict) August 22, 2019
After a turnover of just 9 percent in 2004, every election has brought double-digit percentage change in the House; 94 new members won in the 2010 election - 91 new lawmakers arrived after the 2018 mid-terms.
Across the Capitol, four Senators have already announced they won't run for re-election - three of the four are Republicans.
Congress returns the week after Labor Day - we'll see if there is a rush of people deciding to move on.
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